September 3, 2005 § Leave a comment
Polly Gaster has been thinking and talking about telecentre support networks for a long time.
Based at the Centro de Informatica Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (CIUEM) in Maputo, Polly is amongst a handful of people involved in early thinking telecentre support networks – national associations of telecentres that work together on training, tech support and information sharing. This support network idea was one of the major driving forces behind telecentre.org, and creating or expanding these networks is a major part of our mandate.
Earlier this week, Polly convened a meeting telecentre managers, community media people and government representatives to hash out what a support network might look like in Mozambique. The group made it clear that both the ‘support’ (e.g. a tech help line and training) and the ‘network’ (meetings, e-mail lists, knowledge sharing) sides of this idea are important for the telecentre community in Mozambique. There is also a need to help telecentres and the government to find better connectivity solutions, as most telecentres are having real problems in this area.
Based on the outcomes of this meeting, it looks like telecentre.org will help to set up a support network in Mozambique. This will give us a chance to test out and document the support network concept in its full form (many other countries we are working with are only doing one part of a support network to start off). Also, it will provide an opportunity to work with the UNESCO CMC program and the Open Knowledge Network in as real, on-the-ground context. Both of these programs will also be contributing to the support network in Mozambique.